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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old March 26th, 2009, 01:03 PM   #1
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Is the xl1s dead?

Just wondering, is the xl1s dead? I mean not the actual unit but the need to shoot with one. I seem to see alot more sd footoage shot with the gl2 then the xl1s. I'm debating whether to sell my xl1s or my hd100u. I dont do alot of video, more recording music than anything else, but I need to know which to sell. Sure, some of you guys will get all technical with the replies about chip size and hd, but I'm looking for a non technical response. make any sense?

My wife tells me I dont all the time!
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Old March 26th, 2009, 02:17 PM   #2
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Sam,
I'm originally from Waterbury, and worked in the Bridgeport area ( does Seaside park still exist?) during a summer many years ago...
Your question is difficult to answer. The main question is "what do you want to be able to shoot, and who is your market"? I started with a GL1, moved to an XL2 (great camera), and then got into hdv with a great deal on an XLH1. I do a bit of 2 and 3 camera stuff. so I bought n xha1 new, and had also bought a Sony FX1 3 years ago. Having the 3 hdv cameras ( and the loads of other gear i have) helps me get jobs.
The whole camera landscape is changing at a fast pace, and I wouldn't know what to reccomend. One thing for sure is that I wouldn't invest in an sd camera. I think the Canon A1 is a fantastic all around camera, and decently priced. If I didn't have the money and could only afford to depend $600 on a camera, I'd get the Canon hv30, and then get a bunch of accessories. But it all depends on your budget and market.
Hope that helps.
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Old March 26th, 2009, 04:59 PM   #3
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I just happened to stumble on this thread as I was preparing to calibrate my XL1s and my A1 to be as close as possible for multicam shoots.
I am planning to use my XL1s for 2 more years if it holds out.
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Old March 27th, 2009, 09:08 AM   #4
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thanks for the advice. Yep bruce, seaside is still there. I do have an hd cam the jvc gyhd100u. i guess im looking for a reason to hold on to my xl1s. the wife said sell it, my kids say to give it to them but i just love her to death(the cam that is). she's so sexy.

decisions decisions decisions


ps...great demos on your site bruce but the look of your site is terrible(sorry). it doesnt represent your quality at all. my first initial reaction was 'ok this guy is amatuer' but then i looked at your samples and that changed my mind. i wonder how many possible clients turned away from your site. let me know if I can help as I do web sites occasionally. again, your work is fantastic! good to see other video people in CT.
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Old March 27th, 2009, 09:35 AM   #5
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Still flogging mine :) Wouldn't mind upgrading, but economic circumstances prevents me from doing so... I'm going to claim that I'm holding out for the Scarlet though ;)
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Old March 27th, 2009, 10:21 AM   #6
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sam,
thanks for the feedback. Yes. I HAVE to redo the site. Why don;'t you email youyr number and I'll give you a call. If you could hel;p us that would be great!
thanks
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Old March 29th, 2009, 05:54 AM   #7
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Camcorder models die in stages. The XL1s is manufacturer discontinued, but not yet past the point of where factory maintenance is no longer available (however, that date is not far off, perhaps in a couple years). The technology (SD output on DVD) is still supported by demand in the client market (as evidenced by sale of the GL2 and XL2).

More folks use the GL2 because it is a current model, was lower cost than the XL1s, in some respects easier to handle due to size, and perhaps more consumer-ish, opening a larger potential user market.

For a shooter that needs HD, the XL1s is dead, as are the XL2 and GL2.

So if it meets your current needs, the XL1s is not dead for you.
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Old March 30th, 2009, 12:06 AM   #8
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I’ve been using the XH-A1 for over a year and am really liking the prettier images. However….tonight I drug out the old XL1s to print to tape for a guy who uses DV.

I miss my baby! Love the way the XL1s feels, love the controls, miss my 3X wide angle and 14X manual lenses. I needed to have figured out a way to afford the XL H1A. *sigh*

All that to say, I feel your pain, Sam. Lighting for this beautiful old camera makes or breaks the image, and if you're still able to get pretty pictures out of her then keep her around awhile longer.

Is that non-technical enough for ya? :)
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Old March 30th, 2009, 08:48 AM   #9
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thanks linda! this may sound dumb but the reason i first bought the xl1s was that it was beautiful to look at. I just hate to see her sitting around. my hd100u shoots both sd/hd as you well know and im hating the thought of selling her.

by the way...... the gl2 is a current model? i thought it was an older model?
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Old March 31st, 2009, 08:53 AM   #10
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You could say the GL2 is "older" since it was first announced in July 2002. But believe it or not, after nearly seven years, it's still a current model and it's still sold by Canon dealers. It refuses to die.
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Old March 31st, 2009, 08:25 PM   #11
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I suspect that the GL2 and XL2 will be around as long as there is a market for quality SD MiniDV camcorders, but they no doubt are the end of their respective lines.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 08:14 AM   #12
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wow. didnt know they still sold the gl2. thanks for the info.
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Old April 8th, 2009, 12:58 PM   #13
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I've been wondering about this issue myself. I have an XL1s and a GL1 (which is nearly 10 years old and has never had any problems! amazing!). I love them both and actually was shooting some of my 8 month old son over the weekend using the XL1s . I started to wonder if it was time to upgrade to an XHA1.

I've been shooting weddings since 1999 and I got the XL1s in about 2002. It is pretty impressive looking and speaks to the quality, potentially... if the shooter knows how to use it, of the productions.

I have another friend who has an XHA1 and uses that with a GL1 and says that it is possible to mix the two together with pretty good success.

In the end, I think I am going to keep my XL for a while longer and continue to evaluate the constantly changing HD market.
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Old April 8th, 2009, 08:01 PM   #14
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Quote:
I started to wonder if it was time to upgrade to an XHA1
Might be too late <G>. The XH-A1 has been updated to the XH-A1s version. Seriously, the decision depends on what you are shooting and what your client (or personal) needs are now and in the near future. If the XL1s/GL1 meet your needs, no compelling reason to upgrade. But HD footage of your 8 month old might be nice to have all too soon from now, if that fits your budget.
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Old April 8th, 2009, 08:53 PM   #15
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Don,

Agree. It's the budget part that gets me at the moment. haha Seriously though, I have started putting some money aside from projects that I've been working recently to help pay for an XHA1. I knew the A1s is out, and that would be the one I got.

1. Of course, that is tempered with the fact that I'll have to get a new computer to edit with (although my understanding is, working with HDV isn't -too- bad) ...

2. and a Blu-Ray burner which adds $$ in terms of master disc cost and duplication. duplication offsite at some place like discmakers.

3. On top of that the question comes should I upgrade from CS2 to CS4? How much is that going to set me back? A lot. lol And of course, I see that making that upgrade DEFINATELY requires a new computer system, so that ties into item 1.

4. If I get a new system, should I get one of the cards made by Matrox or Canopus to help with the editing process? Back in the day we use to use the Canopus DV Raptor and then upgraded to the Pinnacle Pro One with Multicam. But then when CS2 came out, we ditched the Pinnacle since CS2 had 4-cam viewing built in.

5. Then there's tapes... do you have to use HDV miniDV tapes or can I really use miniDV tapes with the same success?

So... I guess in the end, from a business perspective, there's a lot more to it than just getting a camera.

From a personal perspective, I think it is probably worth it though. As that is how I started in this business anyway... getting a $2500 GL1 just to film me and my crazy friends on all our college trips and stuff. Then aftger making some connections that turned into a fairly successful event video business over the years.

A lot to ponder.
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